2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2.9 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad)
Petrof Pianos
Petrof Pianos
(ad)
Pianoteq
PianoTeq Karsten Collection
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
Who's Online Now
69 members (BadDude, Beowulf, Abdol, blueviewlaguna., 36251, astrotoy, 19 invisible), 542 guests, and 441 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Practicing Issues
#2880603 08/17/19 12:47 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
I'm sure there must be another thread about this somewhere, but...

There are days such as today, when I'm practicing scales, and
it will get all messy with something simple that I've basically
mastered for a while. I will go for days playing it clean, then today,
my hands struggle, feel like a bunch of bananas until I grind it back
into place.

It's frustrating because just as I feel I'm making progress, feeling
connected with my keyboard, my fingers struggle to find their place
and I have to revisit stuff that I should have moved on from.

Anyone else go through this?

(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880613 08/17/19 01:19 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,264
M
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
M
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 17,264
Originally Posted by jazzpig
I'm sure there must be another thread about this somewhere, but...

There are days such as today, when I'm practicing scales, and
it will get all messy with something simple that I've basically
mastered for a while. I will go for days playing it clean, then today,
my hands struggle, feel like a bunch of bananas until I grind it back
into place.

It's frustrating because just as I feel I'm making progress, feeling
connected with my keyboard, my fingers struggle to find their place
and I have to revisit stuff that I should have moved on from.

Anyone else go through this?





Yes! It's a natural thing to have happen. You make progress, progress, progress, and then suddenly you have a day that makes you feel like all that work was undone! Take a day off from that thing and let your mind catch up from all that progress. smile


private piano/voice teacher FT

[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880614 08/17/19 01:26 PM
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 6,251
Silver Subscriber
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
Silver Subscriber
6000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2015
Posts: 6,251
Yes..... I call it ‘mitten hands’ where my fingers just don’t function (maybe it’s my brain?). I have finally recognized it will happen intermittently and take a break.

Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880617 08/17/19 01:39 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 24,002
Gold Subscriber
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Gold Subscriber
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 24,002
Originally Posted by jazzpig
I'm sure there must be another thread about this somewhere, but...

There are days such as today, when I'm practicing scales, and
it will get all messy with something simple that I've basically
mastered for a while. I will go for days playing it clean, then today,
my hands struggle, feel like a bunch of bananas until I grind it back
into place.

It's frustrating because just as I feel I'm making progress, feeling
connected with my keyboard, my fingers struggle to find their place
and I have to revisit stuff that I should have moved on from.

Anyone else go through this?



These are the phrases that, to me, stand out in your post and may point to part of the problem:

"...my hands struggle..." "... I grind it back into place " "....my fingers struggle..."

There is a suggestion here of effort, force, and tension. Relax, take a deep breath, slow down a bit, and the problem may be resolved.

At other times, it just helps to take a break and work on something else.

Regards,


BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190
Re: Practicing Issues
BruceD #2880689 08/17/19 05:54 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
Thanks for the feedback
Nice to know it's not out of the ordinary.
Of course I expect off days, but this leaves me scratching my
head going "Wha"?

Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880695 08/17/19 06:25 PM
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,580
C
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Dec 2012
Posts: 5,580
I love "mitten hands" -- exactly right. And very common.


. Charles
---------------------------
PX-350 / microKorg XL+ / Pianoteq / Lounge Lizard / EV ZXA1 speaker
Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880746 08/17/19 10:08 PM
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,849
E
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
E
Joined: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,849
when I was able to run long distances for hours, there would be days when for no good reason everything just felt off. On such days a simple half hour run could feel like I was running for the first time, so I doubt this problem is isolated to piano. Always good to listen to what your body is telling you.


Following Trying to follow the Ling Ling 40 hour method

Kawai K8 & Kawai Novus NV10


13x[Linked Image]
[Linked Image]
Re: Practicing Issues
Charles Cohen #2880848 08/18/19 08:50 AM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 5,827
5000 Post Club Member
Offline
5000 Post Club Member
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 5,827
Originally Posted by Charles Cohen
I love "mitten hands" -- exactly right. And very common.



Me too.
I'm also expanding it to "mitten brain."


Learner
Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2880854 08/18/19 09:17 AM
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,119
M
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
M
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 1,119
To the OP—what you’re describing is very natural and happens to every pianist. The only thing is those who have been playing for a long time recognise when it is happening and just leave it at that. Or perhaps some have a different attitude or a different solution to it. But it’s the “non-judgemental” part of the practice process to which I’m referring.

If you’re practicing diligently, which you probably are, and if you’re paying attention to what your playing, which you probably are, then over time, your skills with the things you mention will improve. But at the same time the learning process isn’t linear and what we master today may not be there tomorrow.

Enjoy the process of practicing (and concentrate on your doing and learning, etc.) and all else will come .... in time ....

Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2881492 08/20/19 12:30 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,077
T
Ted Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
T
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,077
Originally Posted by jazzpig
I'm sure there must be another thread about this somewhere, but...

There are days such as today, when I'm practicing scales, and
it will get all messy with something simple that I've basically
mastered for a while. I will go for days playing it clean, then today,
my hands struggle, feel like a bunch of bananas until I grind it back
into place.

It's frustrating because just as I feel I'm making progress, feeling
connected with my keyboard, my fingers struggle to find their place
and I have to revisit stuff that I should have moved on from.

Anyone else go through this?


As the others say, an occasional day like this is quite normal and nothing to worry about. It is possible to develop ways of dealing with it and returning to fluency after a few minutes. It might be using some particular touch, slowing down a bit or playing more lightly. What works for one person might not work for another though and any solution is personal.


"We shall always love the music of the masters, but they are all dead and now it's our turn." - Llewelyn Jones, my piano teacher
Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2881498 08/20/19 01:01 AM
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 144
C
Full Member
Offline
Full Member
C
Joined: May 2017
Posts: 144
We all have our off days. Don't worry about it.

"Practicing scales"? Maybe move onto some pieces you like.

Re: Practicing Issues
CharlesXX #2881505 08/20/19 02:07 AM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,077
T
Ted Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
Online Content
2000 Post Club Member
T
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 2,077
Originally Posted by CharlesXX
We all have our off days. Don't worry about it.

"Practicing scales"? Maybe move onto some pieces you like.


That's a good idea, and if you must practise scales, improvise using them in varied ways to maintain musical interest.


"We shall always love the music of the masters, but they are all dead and now it's our turn." - Llewelyn Jones, my piano teacher
Re: Practicing Issues
earlofmar #2881630 08/20/19 01:14 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by earlofmar
when I was able to run long distances for hours, there would be days when for no good reason everything just felt off. On such days a simple half hour run could feel like I was running for the first time, so I doubt this problem is isolated to piano. Always good to listen to what your body is telling you.

That's a perfect analogy.
I can relate to that completely.

Re: Practicing Issues
Ted #2881632 08/20/19 01:20 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by Ted
Originally Posted by jazzpig
I'm sure there must be another thread about this somewhere, but...

There are days such as today, when I'm practicing scales, and
it will get all messy with something simple that I've basically
mastered for a while. I will go for days playing it clean, then today,
my hands struggle, feel like a bunch of bananas until I grind it back
into place.

It's frustrating because just as I feel I'm making progress, feeling
connected with my keyboard, my fingers struggle to find their place
and I have to revisit stuff that I should have moved on from.

Anyone else go through this?


It is possible to develop ways of dealing with it and returning to fluency after a few minutes. It might be using some particular touch, slowing down a bit or playing more lightly.

I've done this and it does work well for me. I have to fight my own stubbornness sometimes, again, because
I feel like I'm regressing, but I am realizing that it is a false perception.

Re: Practicing Issues
Mark Polishook #2881645 08/20/19 01:41 PM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by Mark Polishook
To the OP—what you’re describing is very natural and happens to every pianist. The only thing is those who have been playing for a long time recognise when it is happening and just leave it at that. Or perhaps some have a different attitude or a different solution to it. But it’s the “non-judgemental” part of the practice process to which I’m referring.

If you’re practicing diligently, which you probably are, and if you’re paying attention to what your playing, which you probably are, then over time, your skills with the things you mention will improve. But at the same time the learning process isn’t linear and what we master today may not be there tomorrow.

Enjoy the process of practicing (and concentrate on your doing and learning, etc.) and all else will come .... in time ....

I'm coming to terms with this understanding.
This is my issue subconsciously, I think.
I'm an older guy with a musical background, at a beginners level in piano.
Because I have aspirations, nothing lofty or really serious though,
I feel constrained by the limited window of opportunity (timewise)
to reach those goals. Every step "back" feels like valuable time lost.

To your point about the process, that's what I'm focusing on and trusting that it
will get me to the best possible place, wherever that may be. Kind of like meditation,
you'll never get to a perfect place, but the commitment to it will continually get you
to a better place.

Again, thanks to everyone for words of wisdom, it really helps a lot.

Re: Practicing Issues
jazzpig #2881862 08/20/19 11:37 PM
Joined: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,152
T
1000 Post Club Member
Online Content
1000 Post Club Member
T
Joined: Sep 2017
Posts: 1,152


Robert Estrin talked about muscle memory. If you practice a piece long enough, you develop muscle memory that you'd play sections of music automatically despite being difficult.

If your playing is inconsistent, you are probably not 100% sure how a piece should be played. The best way is to break it down into small chunks and do slow practice on each. Go over the trouble spots slowly until you can play them consistently at least 5x before speeding up gradually and then connecting the bits before & after.

Re: Practicing Issues
thepianoplayer416 #2881948 08/21/19 07:25 AM
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 3,487
3000 Post Club Member
Offline
3000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 3,487
Originally Posted by thepianoplayer416


Robert Estrin talked about muscle memory. If you practice a piece long enough, you develop muscle memory that you'd play sections of music automatically despite being difficult.

If your playing is inconsistent, you are probably not 100% sure how a piece should be played. The best way is to break it down into small chunks and do slow practice on each. Go over the trouble spots slowly until you can play them consistently at least 5x before speeding up gradually and then connecting the bits before & after.


This was one of Robert Estrin's more interesting videos.



[Linked Image]
Re: Practicing Issues
thepianoplayer416 #2882318 08/22/19 08:27 AM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
J
jazzpig Offline OP
Full Member
OP Offline
Full Member
J
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 41
Originally Posted by thepianoplayer416


Robert Estrin talked about muscle memory. If you practice a piece long enough, you develop muscle memory that you'd play sections of music automatically despite being difficult.

If your playing is inconsistent, you are probably not 100% sure how a piece should be played. The best way is to break it down into small chunks and do slow practice on each. Go over the trouble spots slowly until you can play them consistently at least 5x before speeding up gradually and then connecting the bits before & after.

I've watched some of his videos, great for technique.
I love the energy and spirit that he brings to his videos.


Moderated by  BB Player 

Link Copied to Clipboard
Happy 4th!
Happy 4th of July
Happy 4th!
What's Hot!!
News from the Piano World
Where Did The Buttons Go?!
----------------------
Our April 2020 Newsletter Available Online Now...
The Piano World During the Pandemic!
----------------------
Posting Pictures on the Forums
-------------------
Forums RULES & HELP
-------------------
ADVERTISE on Piano World
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Settings for Roland fp-90
by Baltguy - 07/04/20 02:46 PM
Piano sales are “through the roof”
by WeakLeftHand - 07/04/20 01:10 PM
Happy 4th of July!
by Piano World - 07/04/20 12:38 PM
Suggestion Diabolique
by Florestan7 - 07/04/20 12:29 PM
Forum Statistics
Forums41
Topics200,021
Posts2,976,782
Members97,654
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers


Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter |


copyright 1997 - 2020 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.4